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Access for all

Brunel's SS Great Britain is committed to giving the best experience possible to its visitors.

  • The Great Western Dockyard Companion gives detailed plans of the ship to help you plan your visit.
  • Due to the nature of the site some areas may be difficult to reach, or may involve cobblestones, so where possible alternative access points are provided.
  • We recommend you allow at least two hours to enjoy your visit. Please ask staff if you need any assistance.
  • Companions and assistants are given free entry when accompanying a paying visitor who is disabled.

Virtual Accessible Maps

These accessibility maps allow you to virtually explore the Ticket Office and ship before visiting. The maps include additional sensory information about the site, such as particular smells or sounds in different areas, to help you plan your trip. Made in collaboration with Go Virtually

Visitors with limited mobility and wheelchair users

The Dry Dock, Dockyard Museum, Brunel Institute and the ship are fully accessible for wheel chair users. Both levels of Being Brunel have wheelchair and step-free access following an alternative route. Please be aware that the Dock Office (part of Being Brunel) is a historic building with narrow corridors and doorways.

To avoid the uneven cobblestones through the main gate we have an alternative entrance by the Harbourside Kitchen.

As some cabins are too narrow for standard wheelchairs we have special wheelchairs available for visitors to use free of charge.

Blind and partially sighted visitors

We have a tactile model of the SS Great Britain to help you enjoy your visit. If you would like access to this model, we recommend that you contact us in advance.

Guide and assistance dogs are welcome. We also recommend a sighted assistant join you when you visit. They will receive free entry.

Visual Story and Sensory Information Guide

The Visual Story and Sensory Information Guides are designed to help children prepare for their visit to Brunel’s SS Great Britain. The guides contain pictures and information about some of the things you can expect to see and do on site. The guides can be downloaded below in PDF or adaptable PowerPoint format (PPT).

Family Visual Story PDF PPT
Family Sensory Information PDF PPT


Lifts are available in the Dry Dock, the Dockyard Museum, Being Brunel, on board the ship and in the Brunel Institute.

Accessible toilets

Toilets can be found in the Harbourside Kitchen, the Visitor Centre (ticket office and shop), the Brunel Institute, on the ground floor in the Dockyard Museum, both levels of Being Brunel and on the Saloon Deck on board ship, next to the First Class Dining Saloon.

Brunel's SS Great Britain received the Rough Guide to Accessible Britain award for ‘Best Heritage Venue’. It has also been recognised by the Access Association for its commitment to giving the best experience possible to its visitors.

The Access Association has been impressed with the level of commitment given to resolving issues within this historic dockyard.”

Eamon McClelland, Past President of the Access Association.